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Surface Detail

Banks, Iain, 1954-2013 (Book - 2010 )
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Surface Detail


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When sex slave Lededje Y'breq is murdered by a politician on the planet Sichult, the artificial intelligence running one of the Culture's immense starships resurrects her so she can seek revenge. Meanwhile, the Culture is uneasily watching the conflict over whether to preserve virtual Hells for the souls of "sinners" or give them the release of death.
Authors: Banks, Iain, 1954-2013
Statement of Responsibility: Iain M. Banks
Title: Surface detail
Publisher: New York :, Orbit,, c2010
Edition: 1st U.S. ed
Characteristics: 627 p. ;,25 cm.
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Report This Aug 01, 2012
  • monikak1 rated this: 2 stars out of 5.

Read about a quarter of book. Not my style. Very confusing

Report This May 10, 2012
  • ptupper rated this: 3 stars out of 5.

After enjoying "Matter" a great deal, I didn't like Banks' follow-up Culture novel as much. While "Matter" had several parallel plots, "Surface Detail" has a lot of tangled plots that only loosely interconnect. Banks also develops a bad habit of jumping around in time in a single scene, when there's no particular reason not to tell the scene in a linear way. There are also some logic problems. Much of the story revolves around the concept of Hells, virtual afterlives of punishment and torment. Some activists infiltrate their society's Hell in order report back what really happens. We're later told that the Hell's real purpose to make the living behave properly from fear of punishment. If so, why is what happens in Hell kept secret?

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Banks, Iain, 1954-2013
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